Time between jobs is a great time to increase your industry knowledge, whether it’s studying for a CMP or CAE designation or taking professional courses offered by the national associations and their state and local affiliates. These groups can also be a great place to grow your network. This is also a good time to work on your transferable skills, in case a meeting planning position doesn’t come through. Meeting planning can be about business development, marketing, fundraising, and sponsorship sales, among other things. Think about what will make you more marketable to your target employer, and then go learn more about it.

Sources: Steven Williams, PhD, director of industry and market research, American Society of Association Executives; Sheryl Sookman, CMP, principal, The MeetingConnection, Novato, Calif.; Jim Zaniello, recruiter, Association Strategies, Arlington, Va.; Barbara Dunlavey, CMP, director of meetings and exhibits, American School Food Service Association, Alexandria, Va.; Dawn Penfold, The Meeting Candidate Network Inc., New York.